How to train yourself to think positively

Claire Millins

So who remembers what PMA stands for? If you are of a certain age, you may recall this Persil advert where a young boy was told that if he wanted to be Linford Christie (the British Usain Bolt of his day), he had to think like Linford Christie and have a Positive Mental Attitude (PMA).

Every therapist and coach since has been promoting the virtues of a positive mental attitude. And yes, I buy into the vision that we are what we think, and what we think we will therefore become and attract.

But is it really as simple as just thinking positive?

I don’t know about you, but when I’m feeling a bit blue, the very last thing I can do is whistle a bl**dy happy tune, let alone think positive thoughts. I just feel stuck in a holding pattern on the path to nowhere.

And being a woman, it seems that our every move is dictated by our bloody hormones!

PMS, mood swings, thyroid issues, menopause and yes, even our mental health can be affected. Hormonal anxiety is a thing, and a cyclical one at that; the more stressed we are, the more our hormones can be affected, and vice versa.

So what can we do?

Being positive is a choice!

Did you know that you can, and should, consciously choose your attitude each, and every day?

However, most of the time, we let circumstances choose it for us.

If we get up on time, catch the right train, have a good day, we tend to have a happy attitude, which is all well and good while everything is running smoothly.

But what happens when you sleep through the alarm or your train is delayed … again?

We get stressed, flustered, agitated, and our attitude is anything but positive. Yet this is precisely when we need to make that conscious effort to ‘look on the bright side’, to quote Monty Python.

So how would your life change if you made a conscious decision to have a PMA each day?

Would you feel happier, more motivated to pursue your dreams, or would you feel strong and empowered and feel that you could do anything you set your mind to?

It’s not all hearts and flowers though

Of course, just thinking positive won’t stop the unexpected from happening. Life will still be full of its ups and downs.

But, a positive mental attitude will help us determine how we react to those little challenges life throws at us.

Will we flip the problem on its head and find the best in the situation? Or, do we let them ruin our day and mood?

The point I’m trying to make is, that by focusing on the positive instead of the negative, we help to create more positivity in our lives.

Change is possible

The potential for change is the same for everyone, and just like putty we can mold and shape our life and destiny by our thoughts.

But, it’s said that for every one negative comment or thought, it takes five positive ones to cancel it out.

As humans we have a tendency to focus on the negatives. It’s natural. You just have to look at the news. How many good news stories are reported on a daily basis? Not many, sometimes it seems as if the world is nothing but doom and gloom.

How can we accentuate the positive?

Thinking positive is one thing, but as we all know it’s nothing without action. Here are seven powerful steps that you can start taking today to move towards a more positive attitude:

  • Take positive action

Live every single moment of every single day as if it were your last. Passion and a positive attitude are infectious and you will attract others who have the same outlook.

Remember, we all have the same 86,400 seconds to live every day. We cannot save any for another day, and at the stroke of midnight, the time is reset. Why put everything off until tomorrow?

  • Act … don’t react

You are wholly responsible for your life, no one else. So it’s up to you to create the best one you can. And ignore what others are doing, because there’s nothing worse than comparison-itis!

  • Each moment is perfect

Bad things happen. Fact. But that doesn’t mean you have to let it drag you down. Every setback is nothing more than a learning opportunity. Learning to have a positive attitude during the bad times, will help you become more resilient, stronger, and more determined to succeed.

  • Be grateful

We are often so busy trying to make our way to where the grass is greener that we forget to be grateful for the things we already have. No matter how trivial they seem.

  • Seize every opportunity

Remember, if it looks too good to be true, it often is. There are no quick routes to riches. But don’t be afraid to seize an opportunity that feels right.

  • Have a sense of humor

Life is too short to waste it on being offended by everything, or being offended on someone else’s behalf. Don’t take life, or yourself too seriously. Laughing can help reduce stress and build that positive attitude.

  • Remember … you are in charge of your destiny

As Wilson Phillips sang: “No can change your life except for you!” Every day is another chance for you to create the life you want. There is no limit to how much you can accomplish.


It will take time to realize the full benefits of positive thinking, but it is time well spent. If you accentuate the positives and concentrate on making more positive changes, soon there will be no stopping you.

Until next time darlings.



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Posted By  : Claire Millins

Claire Millins

Claire Millins

Claire is a freelance writer and "blurbologist". She writes about health and wellness, fitness, travel and motorsport. Generally found where the fast cars are, Claire wears a lot of pink and also is a firm believer life should include more impromptu sing-alongs, dance routines and jazz hands 👐